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Harrisonburg-Rockingham County, Virginia Market Report April 2011

By
Real Estate Agent with Kline May Realty

Last month in this report we said the early signs for the Spring and Summer market looked good, and to stay tuned. After looking at April’s numbers, we continue to feel the market is in better shape than it has been in several years. While we are not experiencing a full-blown recovery, it appears the positive trends are continuing with regard to sales, contracts and overall buyer activity. Due to the continued presence of distressed properties in our market, prices continue to drop, however, despite what appears to be strengthening demand for homes. In April, 99 residential units sold through the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Association of REALTORS Multiple Listing Service (HRARMLS), a 12.5% increase over March’s 88 sales. There were not a disproportionate number of sub-$100,000 sales as in March, and the average sales price for the month recovered nicely to $188,353. Year to date, the HRARMLS is 43 units behind last year’s sales pace, but another good months of contracts (123) in April bodes well for closed sales in May and June. Remember, last year’s January through June sales were accelerated by the Home buyer Tax Credit deadline so 2010 must be viewed as a bit of an anomaly. When comparing 2011 sales through April 30 to 2009 sales at the same point in the year, we see the market is within 3 units of the 2009 totals. Although the monthly average and median prices for April recovered from March’s lows, the 12 month trend for average sales price declined for the second month in a row to $193,027. The one and three year changes in the average and median prices of sold homes as of April 30, 2011 are:
Three year change One year change
Average Price Median Price Average Price Median Price
-14.22% -13.38% -4.10% -5.20%
Finally, this spring’s inventory trend is encouraging also. Inventory increased in April, as it always does in the Spring, but is considerably lower than last April–another good sign for sellers and the hope of eventual market balance.
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